A Cold Start to My Gardening Year

In 2017, I completed Master Gardener training, given by the University of Missouri Extension. The importance of note taking, record keeping and documentation was addressed and I took it to heart. My current residence, where I've lived since early 2005, has given me an enormous number of challenges, from which I've learned. Unfortunately, I never kept notes or records of what I've done, or what I've learned, so I'm guilty of committing repeat offenses. In an effort to combat the problem, in late spring of 2017, I wrote GARDEN on the cover of a partially used spiral notebook, and put it in my sunroom, with great plans to make that my garden journal. Number of entries made in that notebook to date: Zero. I didn't know what to write down, how to format it, how it would be organized... and so on.

In late summer I received a catalog from one of our favorite publishers and one product in particular leapt off the page.That product is making its debut in our New Year 2018 catalog, which is arriving in mail boxes this week. That product is number 639263, A Year in the Garden: A Guided Journal. But, before deciding to put it in the catalog, I needed to see it, use it and test it. I requested a sample copy. I received one and looked it over, but didn't make any notes. I decided that I would do it month by month, day by day, front cover to back. So, on New Year's Day, I began.

It was -3 outside that day. Combined with the gray sky, bare trees and my cold feet, it was a grim day and my mood was less than cheery. I'm sure I wasn't alone. I know that bitter cold was widespread and I know that my fellow gardeners are likely feeling as antsy as I am, longing for warmer and longer days and greatly missing the smell of dewy geranium blossoms on a sunny June morning. Making those few notes, along with surfing the web looking for inspiration and instruction for my redbud espalier idea, distracted me from my internal grumbling about cold weather and lack of sunshine.

I think I'll get a lot of benefit from keeping this journal for the next 12 months. I'll make more blog posts about it throughout the year, and I'll have a lot to say about my own garden efforts in 2018.

Please share your garden goals for 2018 by commenting here, or on our Facebook page.

We're also on Instagram. We'll be posting a lot of pictures of projects in my garden, along with results achieved with my favorite garden products.

Hang on! My first seed catalog of the new year arrived yesterday. Spring is coming.


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